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Raiders Roll on after Shootout with Shoreline

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Coach Bill Mendelson returns for his ninth season as head coach and looks to add to the success he has brought to Pierce College.

Mendelson is Pierce College’s winningest coach with a record of 131-98 while collecting his 250th career college win last season.

The Raiders return to the court after a tremendous season last year where they finished 2nd in the NWAACC tournament (Runner up to first place Peninsula).

Mendelson has also taken second place in 2005, and third place in 2007. As the Raiders look to improve on last year’s success, filling the holes left by the graduation of their starters will be an obstacle.

“Last year we had a good team with great chemistry. With only one returning starter this season, we come in very inexperienced.” Mendelson said.

The Raiders will have to rely on a talented freshmen bunch and a couple of sophomore transfers to become a team worthy of a playoff spot in a competitive division.

The Raiders opened the 2012 season with an inter-league game against North Seattle and won 86-22.

The Raiders would then return home to play host to the annual Thanksgiving Tournament at the HEC. The tournament would be a nice change of pace for the Raiders as well as an opportunity to find out what kind of team they will be this season.

Pierce played their first game against Shoreline and could not hold on in a 110-108 shootout resulting in their first loss.

“We knew we had to make adjustments in the first game but we didn’t make them. Our energy was lacking and we were out rebounded.” Mensalson said.

The Raiders regrouped and went on to win their final two games, first beating Lane 92-76 and then Linn-Benton 57-55 to take fourth place.

As Mendelson sees their rebounding as their weakness, he finds strength in their consistency at the foul line.

“We have shot really well, especially with our free-throws.” Mendelson said.

Although they finished in fourth place, the Raiders outscored their opponents 257-241 and only gave up the one loss to Shoreline who would go on to finish second in the tournament.

The Raiders will have more opportunities to gain experience before league play begins.

Pierce will travel to Eugene Oregon to compete in the Dale Bates Tournament and then travel to Seattle for the North Seattle Crossover tournament.

Mendelson and his Raiders feel confident that they will be ready when league play begins and Mendelson has the playoffs in his sights.

“Anything can happen in the playoffs; we’ve gone in as a low seed as well as a high seed and have had success,” Mendelson said.

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The student news site of Pierce College in Lakewood, Washington.
Raiders Roll on after Shootout with Shoreline